San Diego Triathlon Classic Race Recap

Hello everyone!! Hope everyone had a great weekend and guess what? I have another race recap for you from the San Diego Triathlon Classic this weekend! This season started off slow with some clumsy accidents, but glad I’m getting into the rhythm of triathlon racing. Can’t believe there are just a couple more months of the 2016 triathlon season. Then time to eat a lot of donuts and get ready for 2017 race season ;) img_1539Friday morning started off with an hour bike ride before work just to spin out my legs and to make sure my chain was properly lubed (dry chain = THE WORST). Left work early to pick up my race packet because the race was on a Saturday this time around and took Elle on a run. She ran her first mile on Friday!! We are so excited for many more miles to come.

I went into this race with very, very, very low expectations. I started off the week with a sinus infection that still hasn’t fully cleared, and didn’t know how that was going to affect my race performance. Not to mention, the bike course was pretty killer and probably the most climbing I’ve done in a race to date. My expectations were so low to the point where I didn’t even bring a Breakaway Training shirt to change into after because I figured I would go home straight after the race. Because of the low expectations, I started the race super calm, which is extremely out of character for me. img_1553Woke up Saturday morning coughing up my lungs, clogged sinuses that were keeping me from breathing, changed into my tri kit, packed up some oatmeal to eat in the car, and we were off to Liberty Station for the race! I was racing the sprint and for some reason, they thought it would be a good idea to have all 100+ women starting the swim together. From where Elle and Anthony are watching, you can see all of our hot pink swim caps bobbing together in the water. img_1559The swim… was brutal. I am definitely not a strong swimmer and those 750 meters felt like a 1000. Plus, having so many women start at the same time did not help- it resulted in a lot of salt water intake, veering off course, and losing a lot of time going back on course and trying to sight. Needless to say, after this race and a good talk with Jason… I will most definitely be needing a swim coach!! img_1564Once I was out of the water, it was time to start the extremely hilly bike course! The course goes through Cabrillo National Monument as well as the Point Loma Naval base. So many riders were hopping off their bike to push it up some of the hills. Even though the course was tough, that was probably the most fun I’ve had during the bike portion of any duathlon and triathlon. There was constant winding and turning, nice rolling hills, great descents that helped me make up some time, and for once, it was nice passing people on hills instead of them passing me! Not to mention the beautiful views of San Diego at the top of every climb. img_1571The 5K was through a lot of dirt and trail, but after climbing a small bridge, it was flat the rest of the way! This reminded me that I need to run trail a lot more often- Dirt is a lot harder to run in than pavement. To be perfectly honest, I felt like I was doing this entire race in slow motion. From being sleep deprived, sick, and delirious, I really do not know how I got from start to finish. Finished in an hr and 43 minutes with a whole lot of motivation to ride a lot more. Cycling when you’re not breaking things is kind of fun. img_1578Shout out to these two for running along side me at some points to take all the great photos above and waking up at an ungodly hour on Saturday to come watch me race. Elle told me I owe her a new toy and like 5 extra hours at the dog park this week. img_1579img_1583Had a lot of fun running into my two teammates above. Brent did the Olympic distance and finished 4th in his age group and Gunnar finished third overall in the Sprint!!! We are so grateful for the constant support from the BT coaches (Felipe, Luke, Adam, and Chris), our sponsors, and our tri community. Being part of the Orange Family is 90% why I am starting to like triathlon a lot more than just running, despite being the worst swimmer and cyclist in the world. Need a coach? Breakaway Training is the way to go! img_1598Oh, remember how I had zero expectations? I told Anthony before we were about to leave that I wanted to see what my time was. Found out I somehow placed second in my age group and top 20 in females. I guess none of us really knew how to climb that hill that day! Instead of leaving, we stayed for the award ceremony. With 12 girls in my age group this time around, it finally felt like a real podium… but where are number 1 and 3?! C’mon ladies! img_1603A really big fan of the podium medals. All in all, I felt like this is one of the best races I’ve been to in the multisport world. It was extremely well organized, had a designated parking lot for athletes that was less than a block away from the transition area, and really awesome swag- trucker hats for the win! Despite the tough course, this is definitely a race I’m coming back for.

Biggest takeaways from this race:

– BIKE BIKE BIKE BIKE AND THEN BIKE SOME MORE

– Climb some hills

– Don’t get sick and bring a jacket everywhere you go just in case

– I need a swim coach ASAP img_1607After the race, I had to head to the airport in two hours to visit my best friends in San Francisco but before we left.. these two really needed to squeeze in a power nap. Spectating is exhausting business ;)

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Solana Beach Duathlon Race Recap

Hi friends! How was everyone’s weekends?? I hope you spent a lot of it swimming, biking, and running! Remember how I told you last week I was really nervous for the Solana Beach Duathlon? Well turns out it wasn’t so bad and I’m so happy cause it’s been forever since I’ve done a race, let alone a race recap!IMG_0949Let’s rewind to Saturday night and the foods that attributed to Sunday’s race day success. Anthony and I went out for Italian food with a couple of our friends. Decided to play it safe and stick with pizza with sausage and bell peppers. Not pictured: the three loaves of complementary bread they brought to our table. I definitely accomplished all of my carbo-loading goals. IMG_0950Normally I wouldn’t eat dessert the night before a race but a trip to Hammond’s for ice cream flights was too good to pass up. Plus, everyone knows ice cream and donuts are my biggest weaknesses so it’s really everyone else’s fault for suggesting it. Not my lack of self control or anything… Four flight flavors were: birthday cake, blueberry cheesecake, cinnamon swirl, and butter pecan. Two of my friends got PB Oreo and I’m still kicking myself for not adding that flavor to my ice cream flight. IMG_0970Boom. Race day. I was kind of freaking out about the bike portion of the race since I’m still not very good at shifting on my TT bike and don’t even get me started on how much I struggle with making right hand turns. A bunch of my friends and teammates have done this race before so as I was racking up my bike, they gave me a course overview and told me what to expect for the turns and where to pick up speed on the run. I headed to the start for the duathlon and for the first time in my 4 years of racing, the race did not start on time! We were set to start at 6:50am but because the street patrols were late, we started almost at 7am. There is a first time for everything. IMG_0969One of my girlfriends who lives in Solana Beach texted me the night before telling me she was going to come watch me race! She is the reason I am on Breakaway Training (her bf is one of the coaches and a pro triathlete), my advisor at UCSD, and since I’ve graduated, one of my sweetest and most supportive friends. I didn’t expect to see her until the finish line but there she was, waiting at the start of the duathlon before I even got to the start. Now that is friendship! IMG_0968After catching up with Kristen for sometime at the start, we were off! Since we started the race late, I felt like I lost some of my warm-up and the first quarter of a mile of the duathlon mile run did not feel so great. My hat was falling off, my quads were tight, and oh yeah, did you know San Diego gets humid nowadays?! Then somehow, half way through, my body decided to wake up, remembered it was in a race, and I finished the first mile with a 6:24 min/mile. IMG_0967Note to self: take out your sunglasses before the transition, not during. Spent a little more time in struggle city than I would like getting my bike, helmet, shoes, and sunglasses on before heading out to the mounting area to start the bike leg! The goal of the bike part was just to build confidence. My coach and I talked about pushing the run beyond my comfort zone but staying safe when it came to the bike. That meant getting passed A LOT but also building my confidence in racing on a bike again! After two scenic loops from Solana to Encinitas along the 101 highway, I finished the 9 mile bike leg in 33 minutes and it was time to bring it home with the final 5K!IMG_0972The second transition to the run was a lot smoother than the first. By the time I started the 5K, the humidity had really started to set in but the overcast made a world of difference. For all of you that know me (or follow my blog), heat and I are mortal enemies (this is going to make my triathlon in 2 weeks super fun). I would take humidity and overcast over humidity and heat any day. I know, I’m the worst Floridian ever. One thing I started to do more during hard runs and races is looking at my pace on my Garmin. I don’t know why I didn’t do it before but it has helped me make huge improvements in my training when I know there are certain numbers I want to hit. I told myself I was not allowed to go over 7:30 minute miles during the 5K and finished the last duathlon leg in 22:18. IMG_0956My cheering squad at races just got even better with a puppy to greet me at the end! Elle’s first race and I think she’s going to like this sport considering every triathlete brought their dog to the race. Finished in 1:05:08, which is a 5 minute PR from my last (and first) duathlon in October. Once I start making improvements in my cycling, I think duathlons and I can become great friends! IMG_0971Just some of the coolest coworkers ever at the race. Both Carlos and Jason did the triathlon and braved the open water ocean swim that I had zero interest in. IMG_0954Finished 8th female overall and 1st in my age group. I promise there was another girl in my age group but I guess she didn’t want to stick around for the awards? IMG_0962IMG_0966I have some of the best friends and support systems in this sport! Ever since I joined Breakaway Training, I constantly have friends who challenge me and make me a better athlete everyday. Not to mention friends like Jason and Kristen who give the best pre and post-race pep talks. Can’t imagine what I would do without this community.

Thank you Breakaway Training, Coach Felipe, and all of my orange family teammates! It was awesome to hear people cheering and yelling your name, high-fiving people on the 2 loop run course, and wishing each other luck once you saw them on the course. Special thanks to Jon for his thumbs up when I felt like my legs were going to fall off in the last loop of the run. IMG_0959I think it’s safe to say the dogs had a great time at this race too. IMG_0965And of course, the perfect recovery involves a huge chocolate donut.

SoCal Ragnar Relay Recap: Best 2 Days of My Life

Good morning everyone! Hows your Tuesday going so far? My past two mornings have been a little tough getting out of bed post-Ragnar and my brain has felt like mush up until today, so I can finally type out a recap! IMG_3604Let me just start off by saying, Ragnar was the most incredible experience. The teamwork, the friendships, the laughter, the running, the sleep deprivation… 100% worth it for this experience. We made sure we packed a lot of food and baby wipes to last us through the next few hours!IMG_3619_2I was in van 2, so we couldn’t start running until van 1 one finished their first legs. We got to start a little bit later (sorry van 1 for having to wake up at 5) and drove to exchange 6 to hang out, stretch, check out the expo they had, and stock up on Nuun! IMG_3635Here comes Janice, meaning it was our turn to start!IMG_3638And van 2 has started! Brandon was leg 7 and I was leg 8, so I spent the entire time during his 12 miler feeling extremely impatient to start running. I wasn’t scheduled to run until 5:50PM and as a morning runner, I experienced a lot of angst waiting for my turn. IMG_3644_2The last few minutes before Brandon was scheduled to come in so I could take off! For Ragnar, any time from 6:30PM-6:30AM is considered night time and you have to be wearing reflective gear- even though I started my leg around 5:50PM, it was going to be considered “night time” once I started going. My first leg was 9.3 at 7:55 min/ mile! My coach and I discussed Ragnar strategy of having two tempo runs and 1 marathon goal pace run during Ragnar. I didn’t believe I could do it and kind of regretted how fast I ran the first leg!!  IMG_3697This one was a little tougher- 5.4 miles in the dark at 2:30AM! I was definitely feeling a little anxious about running this leg, especially since the longer your leg is, the less people in between you there are. However, something about the fear and adrenaline caused this leg to be ran at a 7:56 min/mile average, knocking my two tempo runs out of the way! IMG_3649The next morning after our van finished by 6AM, we found the nearest Denny’s we could for real food. Even diner food tasted good after nothing but peanut butter, bread, pretzels, and bananas. It didn’t necessarily feel good a few hours later, but no regrets in the moment. IMG_3664My last leg was the toughest- 8.8 miles through La Jolla. I was definitely familiar with my surrounds and where I was running since I’ve ran a lot in these areas but I didn’t know if my legs could handle such heavy elevation. Finished in 9:19 min/mile, 19 seconds slower than my marathon goal pace! I’ll attribute that to all the hills ;) IMG_3656Anthony and I both finished our legs! Time for 3 more teammates to finish theirs before we have finished our FIRST RAGNAR! IMG_3675Rachel was our last leg so we were so excited to run to the finish line with her. She absolutely killed it, sprinting the 100 meters, making it very hard for us to follow! 29 hours, 22 mins, something seconds later, and our SoCal Ragnar Relay was done! We probably got a total of 2 hours sleep during that entire trip, but it was well-worth it. I am hooked and ready to relay again! IMG_3679Medals and beer- the perfect combo. IMG_3685_2Cheers to the perfect and best 2 days of my life! IMG_3690_2Oh yeah, my legs were in serious need of some TLC after. These elevation legs were great and served as massaging compression socks. I was a little skeptical at first but once they started, I was in heaven.